12th Jun2017

‘Sam Wilson: Capt. America #22’ & ‘Dr. Strange #21’ Review

by Dan Clark

Sam Wilson: Captain America #22


Written by Nick Spencer | Art by Sean Izaakse | Published by Marvel Comics

When reading Captain America: Sam Wilson #22 I realized what has been missing in the grander Secret Empire storyline so far. In this issue we see Sam Wilson is the heart and soul of this story. Not only was he just wearing the stars and stripes, his closest friend is now betraying everyone he once stood for. Spencer has been chipping away at the life of Wilson and now with Secret Empire he executed his final blow.

Here we see how Wilson has been surviving in a country ruled by Hydra. One of the more intriguing aspects is how, in a way, Wilson has found the place in the world he has long be searching for. Now out of the public eye he can disregard the need to worry about his public persona and just do what he feels is right.

Sean Izaakse’s is heaps better than what is currently going on in the other Captain America book, but his style does seem inconsistent. At time character’s facial expression do not fully match up with the words they are speaking or the overall tone of the book. Part of that is also due to the coloring of Nolan Woodard. A better choice of color pallet could have evened out the emotional impact of the issue.

Dr. Strange #21


Written by Dennis Hopeless | Art by Niko Henrichon | Published by Marvel Comics

It was a sad day when Dennis Hopeless’s run on Spider-Woman ended. It was one of the best and most consistent books Marvel was putting out. Adding to that sadness is the fact that Jason Aaron is leaving this book, but if anyone could do this book justice it is Hopeless. Although Marvel is not doing him any favors by causing him to begin his run in the middle of someone else’s story.

That is true in more ways than one as for some odd reason Dr. Strange #21 is actually coming out before issue #20. So Jason Aaron has one more issue to complete his run, but Marvel wanted to get this issue out most likely due to its tie in with Secret Empire. Considering the constraints Hopeless and his team were put under they put in some quality work.

Hopeless does not toss away what Aaron has done so far as Doctor Strange is still living in a world without magic. Now with New York in the Darkforce dome he is more desperate than ever. Now it takes days to scrape together magical scraps to fight against the dark forces. Aaron also gave Strange more of a snarky side he never had before and Hopleess has kept that part of the character, while even making him even saltier.

Hopeless also brings along a few recognizable friends like Spider-Woman who was a welcome addition as a fan of his past work. It was odd that Strange was a side character for much of his own book, but again it is the side effect when you need to tie you series into whatever current event is happening. One positive side effect is that I am now interested seeing Hopeless take on a Daredevil series.

Chris Bachalo is hard artist to follow. It’s abstract style fits perfectly for the insane world of Doctor Strange. When the change of team was announced my biggest concern was who would replace him. Niko Henrichon is not a name I was aware of prior to this issue but major credit for him for crafting a book that keeps the world of Doctor Strange consistent while putting his own stamp on it. Marvel has been hurting for quality artists recently so when we get a positive surprise like Henrichon, it is something to celebrate.


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